Brain research emphasizes the importance of having children recall information throughout the day. (Think of it as that extra pat on the back or a second helping of dessert.) What a simple strategy that most of us don’t utilize nearly as much as we should. Here are a few tips for having children recall information after you’ve read a story, taught a lesson, or at the end of the day.
Thumbs Up Thinking – If you’ve learned something new you can stick up your thumb. If you’ve learned more than one new thing you can stick up a finger for each additional thing.
Right Now! Right Now! - Stop at random times in the day and shout, “Right now, right now, right now, right now! Who can raise their hand and tell me something they know right now that they didn’t know when they came in the classroom this morning?”
Partner Share – Have children turn to a friend and share something new they learned.
Toss and Tell – Take a bean bag or wadded up paper ball. Ask a review question and then toss the ball to a student. The student answers the question or says something they learned and then tosses the ball back to you. Continue as time permits.
Draw – Let children make “thinking pads” by cutting scrap paper into fourths. Staple about 10 sheets together. Use thinking pads to have children illustrate what they’ve learned after a lesson or after reading a book.
Visualize – Have children close their eyes and reflect on what they did well and what they learned.
Microphone – Pass around a play microphone or telephone for children to state what they’ve learned.
*Let children pretend they are a news reporter and state facts about the day.
Kiss Your Brain – Write “Kiss Your Brain!” on a poster and tape it to your door. Before children leave for the day they must say something they learned and then kiss their brains.
Chant – Start a beat for this chant by slapping thighs and clapping hands. Go around the room as you say the chant and children respond:
Hey, Hey, what do you say?
What did you learn in school today?
So, what do you RECALL from reading my blog today? Can you use one of these ideas in your classroom this week?